PHOENIX - The Western Apprenticeship Coordinators Association (WACA) has recognized the Phoenix Joint Apprenticeship Training Committee (JATC), which is supported by the Arizona Chapter of the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors National Association (SMACNA Arizona), as the Exemplary Apprenticeship Program for the state of Arizona for 2003.

The annual award is based on criteria such as apprentice support, community involvement, and sharing of expertise.

"Lou Maple (training director) and George Sapien (assistant training director) work tirelessly to provide a quality learning environment for their apprentices," said Dennis Anthony, president of WACA.

"We are proud to receive this award," Maple said, "and continuously work to offer superior education and training through such components as guest speakers, mentoring, accreditation, and participation in community events like ‘Christmas in April.'"

The JATC is jointly supervised and funded by SMACNA Arizona and Sheet Metal Workers International Association Arizona Local 359. There are currently nearly 150 students in the JATC program.

"This is a testament to SMACNA contractors and their ability to provide the best training and the highest quality craftsmanship in the industry," said SMACNA Arizona's executive director, Carol Goguen.

SMACNA is an international association of union contractors in the sheet metal and air conditioning industry representing 4,500 contributing contractor firms. The organization's mission is to uphold the highest standards of quality in all facets of the sheet metal and air conditioning industry. To reach this goal, SMACNA Arizona has contributed more than $1 million statewide toward skills training and apprenticeships programs over the past three years.

Publication date: 12/29/2003